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Rules set on logging in Fawn

| Thursday, Sept. 14, 2017, 12:11 a.m.

Logging operations in Fawn will now be regulated by an ordinance passed Tuesday night.

Concerns have been raised recently as a result of damage done to roads during timber harvesting and possible soil erosion.

The ordinance spells out the need to regard the property of adjacent landowners and the environmental impact from improper tree harvesting, among other regulations. Now, a logging plan has to be submitted to the township by a professional forester or a forest technician. The plans address erosion, sedimentation control and stream crossing.

For instance, logging within 75 feet of a trout stream is prohibited unless certain conditions are met.

Road bonds are to be posted by the logger in a “form acceptable to the township.”

“We have to get plans put into place, and you can't come out on to our roads without a bond,” supervisors Chairman Dave Montanari said.

Loggers also must make sure township roads remain free of mud, dirt and debris resulting from timber harvesting.

Tree harvesting can take place only between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m., and no logging operations are permitted on Sundays.

A township-appointed enforcement officer can shut down an operation without a logging plan or when an immediate environmental risk is determined. Ordinance violators must be provided with a written statement describing each violation.

Litter also must be cleaned up after a logging operation has been completed.

Convicted violators can be fined up to $500 per day.

Officials said the ordinance doesn't regulate timber harvest for home use, noncommercial timber stand improvement work or a change in the land's usage.

Tree pruning, removal of less desirable trees and large shrub removal are not affected by the ordinance.

The ordinance will take effect Saturday.

George Guido is a freelance writer.

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